I don't think it ever occurs to you how strange you are until you look at yourself through someone else's eyes. What's normal to you maybe totally foreign to someone else. This thought came to mind Thursday night after my friend Whitney visited to spend the night. As soon as she arrived, being the gracious Southern hostess I am (Ha!), I showed her around our humble home. Of course, I stressed over the fact that the house wasn't spotless, but I'm comfortable enough with Whitney to have let her seen it at its end-of-the-week, clothes-strewn-everywhere, kitchen's-a-disaster worst.
Looking at our little family of three cats, me, and Jeremy, I couldn't help but wonder what she thought of us in our "home environment." Sure, I work with Whitney everyday, but it's rare that you get to see your coworkers in relaxed-home mode, so I just wondered what Whitney must think of my relaxed-home mode...and here's what I came up with.
Things Whitney and others probably notice while visiting the Ross family:
1) First of all, there's the trio of felines constantly plotting your demise. I know this because they're constantly plotting our demise as well. I catch them staring at me sometimes, and I can see it in their eyes. "Must overtake human and claim house as territory." They jump all over you and the furniture, for which I apologize, but controlling a cat is like controlling a...well, cat. They're pretty much going to do what they want. Added to this is the cat hair that sticks to your clothes like glue. This makes their presence a constant and annoying one. Why do we have them, you ask? Love or craziness...I haven't decided which.
2) Related to the cats, and everything really is, you'll notice a sock sticking out of every closed door in the house. This one is hard to figure. You might think, "hey, they're trying to give that old dorm room signal of sock on the door knob..." But wait, the sock isn't on the door knob, is it? It's actually tucked between the closed door and the frame. Why? Because one of our cats, Sushi, is obsessed with doors. Her obsession is most fully realized at night, when she goes through the house and systematically tries to open or close every door. For the doors she tries to close, we had to come up with a system that would keep her from closing them. Why, you ask again? Well, because if we didn't, as soon as she closes the door, she starts incessantly banging on the door. She shakes it in its frame until Jeremy or I finally drag our butts out of bed and re-open the door...only for her to close it again and start the process over. After a few nights of this, we had to come up with a plan to outsmart the cat...thus the socks in the door and in the hinges. We found that if it's in the door it keeps her from being able to rattle the frame, and if it's in the hinges, it keeps her from being able to fully close the door. Problem solved. Us - 1, Cats - 113. So, when we hand you a sock to put in your door frame before you go to bed, just smile and nod. It's for your protection.
3) The complete and total lack of curtains. I've never really been a fan of curtains, and my curtain-less house reflects that. Don't get me wrong. We do have blinds and shades, just no curtains. Pretty weird, I know. But during the day, I love for the light to filter in, and the fewer things I have obstructing my windows, the better.
When trying to think of other things you might notice upon a visit to our house, I realized that most of them related to our cats. There's the cat/junk room with not 1, not 2, but 5 litter boxes. There's the fact that our arm chair in the living room usually has "living arm rests," as Jeremy calls them, with a cat perched on each arm more often than not. There's the dozens of cat toys strewn over the entire house. There's the laser pointer entertainment hour, when we bring out the laser pointer to torture the cats with....the list goes on and on.
Point being, looking at our family through someone else's eyes, I realized just how special we are. We may not be the most "normal" family in the world, but our little unique home is probably one of the happiest.